In the modern political arena, the President shines above everyone else. In fact, most Americans believe the President can do anything he wants, and presidential candidates back up that belief by making promises during the campaign season about what they will do if elected. The reality, of course, is that the President is subject to the system of checks and balances created in the American Constitution. While the powers of the office have expanded over time, especially since the presidency of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the President is certainly not all powerful.
In this unit, we will examine the qualifications and roles of the President. We will focus very closely on presidential powers, both in the Constitution and in practice, and how those powers have expanded over time. We will also look at the organization of the executive branch of government and specifically the job of the Vice President. We will end with an examination of the line of succession and discover why, during every State of the Union address, one cabinet member is taken to a secret location.
This topic is especially important in this year's presidential election season. With such a contentious campaign, voters are faced with a tough choice for the next Chief Executive. Understanding the job of the President will make you more prepared to cast your vote for the next President, whether in 2016 or 2020.
Assignment #1: Presidential Qualifications
Assignment #2: Presidential Powers, Part 1
Assignment #3: Presidential Powers, Part 2
Assignment #4: Presidential Powers, Part 3
Assignment #5: Presidential Powers, Part 4
Assignment #6: The Executive Branch
Assignment #7: The Vice Presidency
Assignment #8: Test Review